OSU getting into the dog treat business to give back to school’s pet therapy program

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STILLWATER, Okla. (KFOR) - To call OSU's First Cowgirl, Ann Hargis an animal lover is an understatement.

“Scruff was rescued by students after he`d been shot,” OSU First Lady Ann Hargis said.

Eventually, the Hargis family adopted Scruff. He then became part of the OSU Pete's Pet Posse program that started in 2013.

It`s the only pet therapy program of its kind in the nation.

“These dogs give back to the entire OSU family to students, to faculty, to visitors, to alums,” Hargis said.

And a new way to integrate dogs into the university is through Pete`s Treats.

Animal treats were developed at OSU`s Health Services department.

Meanwhile, the engineering lab made the treat cutters.

It`s the brainchild of Mrs. Hargis and OSU alum and Animal Planet TV host Travis Brorsen.

“We were talking about pet health and wellness and just started talking about the possibility of a really healthy dog treat and the next thing you know, we have one,” celebrity dog trainer Travis Brorsen said.

A nonprofit organization employing adults with special needs makes the dog treats in Enid.

“When people buy these treats for their dogs, they`re not only giving the dog the healthiest treat they can get but they're providing jobs for these amazing people who wouldn`t be working otherwise,” Brorsen said.

It took months to come up with the all-natural recipe for Pete`s Treats. There was a lot of testing both by dogs and humans.

“Okay, so I have a natural unsalted peanut butter and a solid coconut oil,” registered dietitian Elizabeth Lohrman said.

There's also sweet potato... Flaxseed and a natural seed powder to get them the orange color.

The money raised from the treats will go back to fund the Pete’s Pet Posse program now with 60 therapy pet and owner teams on three campuses.

“We can`t help the pets without helping the people. People are first and that`s why the pets are here to reciprocate that wonderful feeling,” Brorsen said.

Make no bones about it these treats taste good for both canine and companion.

For more information about the pet therapy program, click here.

For more information on Pete’s Treats, click here.

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